On the Sweetness of Mormon Life: Pleasant Plants

August 13, 2007 | 8 comments

In Sunday School yesterday we read about the day of Pentecost where Peter cited God’s promise that in the last days He would pour out his Spirit and the Saints would dream dreams.

The Lovely one and I garden every year, partly because we like it, partly because our parents always did it, and partly because our prophets recommend it (President Faust made a particular impression on us). We aren’t equal in our enthusiasm for all the commandments (she’s much more into searching Isaiah then I am, for instance), but we both like to garden.

This year in addition to everything else she experimented with a three-sisters garden, where you plant corn, greenbeans, and squash all mixed together in the pueblo style. She picked a spot of ground we haven’t used before and put a lot of work into it. Our little girls helped. There was a real excitement there. Their three-sisters garden was green and growing.

Then her pregnancy got complicated and our lives turned inward. We spent a couple of our gardening weekends at the hospital. She got put on bed rest. I was too busy to do all the loving work for it that she did. The weeds grew and bugs ate. The garden languished. We’ll get a handful of produce now, no more.

Her health and pregnancy have stabilized enough to spend an hour or two on the lawn chair under the elm while the girl play. She tries to avoid looking at her garden when she does. She gets frustrated.

Last night she dreamed that she was attending a workshop on growing greenbeans. The instructor talked about the importance of daily, assiduous work with the greenbeans, which was an exciting prospect in the dream. Then he gave her a single greenbean to try. It tasted amazing.

After she woke up she was mulling over the dream when the Spirit brought to her mind a phrase from Isaiah: the men of Judah are his pleasant plant. She was suddenly engulfed in the love of God.

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8 Responses to On the Sweetness of Mormon Life: Pleasant Plants

  1. Ray on August 13, 2007 at 2:45 pm

    Thanks, Adam. Great lesson; great way to learn it.

  2. Ray on August 13, 2007 at 2:47 pm

    Sorry; I meant, “Great lesson; great way to share it and help me understand it.” “Learn” just doesn’t sound right when I read it on the screen.

  3. P. G. (Patricia) Karamesines on August 13, 2007 at 3:29 pm

    This is very nice, a very pleasant read. Spiritually nectarean!

  4. Adam Greenwood on August 13, 2007 at 3:33 pm

    Thanks, PGK. Its the nuts and fruits course after the meaty main dish you served up.

  5. Julie M. Smith on August 13, 2007 at 4:41 pm

    Ah, I love this. And congratulations on the impending arrival of a new little Greenwood.

  6. Andrew Ainsworth on August 13, 2007 at 7:16 pm

    Thanks Adam, I enjoy hearing these types of gardening experiences. Gardening has taught me three principles I try to apply to raising my children:

    Consistency: The tomatoes are twice as big the years when I consistently water them every day. But if I get around to watering them now and then only when they look like they really need it, I get half as many and they’re half-sized.

    Gentleness: I can’t tell you how many times I’ve taken a pair of pruning shears to an overgrown tomato plant with the intention of doing it some good, only to go too far and rob it of the large leafy canopy that protects its fruit and soil from the sun.

    Patience: Every year I have a plant or two that looks like it’s not going to amount to anything. I compare it with its brother and sister plants and wonder why it isn’t growing nearly as fast and has only a fraction of the fruit. But by the end of the growing season, they end up astounding me with how fruitful they’ve become.

  7. Matt Evans on August 14, 2007 at 11:31 am

    Beautiful, Adam.

  8. Kristine on August 14, 2007 at 11:49 am

    Thank you for sharing this, Adam–happy growing to you all! Plants, babies, souls…


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